Jayashree Chakravarty | Earth as Haven: under the canopy of love
Jayashree Chakravarty’s art practice has addressed the exigent situation of shrinking natural habitat and water bodies in ever-expanding Indian cities. Working with organic material – roots, dry leaves, sap, dry flowers, nature is both the subject and substance of her art.
Mumbai, East Wing, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya, 159 - 161, Mahatma Gandhi Road, FortMap
Over the last three decades or more, Jayashree Chakravarty’s art practice has addressed the exigent situation of shrinking natural habitat and water bodies in ever-expanding Indian cities. Living by herself in a rapidly urbanizing suburb of Kolkata in Eastern India, she has been a witness to the rich marshlands of Salt Lake transform into ‘Salt Lake City’ a sprawling suburban development, exemplary of congestive urbanism and a growing hostility towards the ecology of life. Her work then extrapolates this loss, reacting and reflecting upon a fast disappearing natural world. Nature no longer is a force independent of human impact and control. Jayashree reminds us that the earth is continuously being pushed towards a precarious edge, where the threat of daily damage has taken on precipitous dimensions. Through poetic evocations, she weaves into her personal vision the need for environmental healing and resurrection.
Having grown up in Tripura, the artist frequently visited the lush northeast Indian jungles with her father who was a doctor and an avid naturalist. Jayashree vividly recalls her formative years, when she was exposed to the joys of wonderment at every little discovery in the world around her. She was made aware of cycles of bloom and decay, insects and birds building their homes sharing the same tree and the symbiotic relation of things around her.
Nature for her ceases to be a ‘view of the landscape’ frozen in time but has always meant the extended holistic environment that can neither be captured nor comprehended from a single vantage point. Her soaring paper installations hence opt for a mobile vision that takes the viewer’s gaze along to glide over the surface of her unframed scrolls as well as penetrate the layers underneath.
Working with organic material – medicinal seeds, roots, dry leaves, sap, dry flowers, nature is both the subject and substance of her art. It is both context and content for her ruminations on inhabiting and preserving the earth.